How Much Should I Expect As A Doctor Of Pharmacy

After earning your doctor of pharmacy(PharmD) degree, then the obvious career choice in this field is to become a pharmacist. When it comes to choosing a career, there are a number of factors to consider: personal interests, working hours, terms, and conditions of employment.

However, money remains a key motivating factor, and one question that would always pop up in your mind is how much a PharmD salary is?

The scope of pharmacy practice includes traditional roles such as combining and distributing medications, and it also includes more modern services related to health care, including clinical services, reviewing medications for safety and efficacy, and providing drug information.

Pharmacists, therefore, are the experts on drug therapy and are the primary health professionals who optimize the use of medication for the benefit of the patients.

In this article, we examine the earning potential for students who has a PharmD degree and are interested in pursuing a career as a Pharmacist. And also, we examine the process of becoming one and what one can expect.

Here is a review of what you should expect in this post:

Table of Contents

What Is Pharmacy?

Pharmacy is the health science that links medical science with chemistry and it entails the discovery, production, control, disposal, safe and effective use of drugs.

The practice of pharmacy requires excellent knowledge of drugs, their mode of action, side effects, interactions, mobility, and toxicity.

Who Is A Pharmacist?

Pharmacists, also known as chemists or druggists, are health professionals who specialize in the use of medicines, as they deal with the composition, effects, mechanism of action, and proper and effective use of drugs.

What Is A Doctor Of Pharmacy(PharmD) Program?

A Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) is a professional doctorate in pharmacy. In some countries, it is a first professional degree and a prerequisite for licensing to practice the profession of pharmacy or to become a clinical pharmacist.

In many countries, they are allowed to practice independently and can prescribe drugs directly to patients.

 A PharmD graduate is entitled to prefix their name with “Dr.”

How Do I Get Into A Doctor Of Pharmacy(PharmD) Program?

Some pharmacy schools accept students immediately after they graduate from high school. Pharmacy schools that accept all or most students directly from high school are referred to as “0-6” programs or early assurance programs because these students can complete their pre-pharmacy and professional study within six years after high school.

When a student applies to a “0-6” or early assurance program, he or she must meet the admissions requirements of the college of which that program is a part. That will likely include a minimum grade point average (GPA) or SAT or ACT score.

The pharmacy program may have additional requirements. Students advance to the professional portion of the program after completing all undergraduate prerequisites.

Students who apply directly to four-year professional programs, rather than entering through a “0-6” or early assurance program, typically have to take the PCAT, a pharmacy school entrance exam. Although not all schools require this test, many do.

Most programs require applicants to use  PharmCAS. It is an online system that allows applicants to complete a single application for multiple schools.

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What Are The Educational Requirements And Qualifications Needed To Be A Pharmacist?

Those interested in becoming a pharmacist must have the following education and certifications:

1. College Degree

You must earn a Doctor of Pharmacy degree, known as a “PharmD” from a pharmacy program accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE).

Programs typically last six years, but those who have already completed two years of college may apply to a four-year pharmacy program. Most schools require applicants to take the Pharmacy College Admissions Test (PCAT).

2. Courses

 Course curricula include pharmaceutics and pharmaceutical chemistry, pharmacology (effects of drugs on the body), toxicology, and pharmacy administration.

3. Training

After graduation from a PharmD program, pharmacists seeking an advanced position, such as a clinical pharmacy or research job, may need to complete a one- to two-year residency.

Pharmacists who choose to complete the two-year residency option receive additional training in a specialty area such as internal medicine or geriatric care

4. Licencing

 Each U.S. state licenses pharmacists and has its own set of requirements. All applicants must pass the North American Pharmacist Licensure Exam (NAPLEX), administered by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP).

Most states also require graduates to pass a pharmacy law test known as the Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Exam (MPJE). Also, pharmacists who administer vaccinations and immunizations need to be certified in most states.

How Do I Get Licenced As A Pharmacist?

In the United States, a pharmacist needs a professional license issued by a state, the District of Columbia, or a U.S. territory. Each administration board of pharmacy sets its own requirements and licensees are only allowed to practice in that administration.

If you want to practice elsewhere, you will need a new license. Licenses are usually transferable from state-to-state, but sometimes require taking additional exams.

Below are the steps to licensure for pharmacist:

Steps to Licensure for Graduates of U.S. Pharmacy Schools

Step 1:

Take the North American Pharmacist Licensure Exam (NAPLEX).

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Step 2:

 Depending on the state in which you want to practice, take either the Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Exam (MPJE), a test of pharmacy law, or a state-administered pharmacy law exam.

Step 3:

Take any other tests that may be required by your state.

Step 4:

Complete the number of hours of practical experience your administration requires. Many people meet this requirement while still in school.

Step 5:

 Consent to a criminal background check if the administration requires it.


Steps to Licensure for Graduates of Foreign Pharmacy Schools

Step 1:

Apply for the Foreign Pharmacy Graduate Examination Committee (FPGEC) Certification and take the Foreign Pharmacy Graduate Equivalency Examination (FPGEE).

Step 2:

Pass the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL iBT).

Step 3:

 Pass all exams required by the administration in which you want to practice, as discussed above.

How Do I Get A Professional Pharmacy Job?

After earning a PharmD degree and getting licensed, it will be time to find your first professional pharmacy job.

Look at resources such as Indeed, Monster, and CareerBuilder for the latest job postings. These sites also provide other helpful resources such as resume and cover letter writing tips, as well as interview techniques.

You could also join organizations to meet other members and gain additional information. The American College of Clinical Pharmacy (ACCP) provides an extensive listing of key organizations that provide educational, networking, and career opportunities for members.

How Much Should I Expect As A Doctor Of Pharmacy(PharmD) Holder?

PharmD salary varies in different countries and it also depends on the experience too. The median annual wage for pharmacists in May 2018 was $126,120, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

There are many career options to choose from when you have a PharmD degree, ranging from a hospital pharmacist, a consultant pharmacist, a nuclear pharmacist, and so on.

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The community pharmacist, in 2015, made a median salary of between $90,000 – $140,000 per year, depending on experience and location.

The community pharmacist may practice at the small local corner drug store, in the larger box stores, or in grocery stores that provide pharmaceutical needs.  

A hospital pharmacist’s salary is comparable to that of the community pharmacist, if not the same.

They, as well, dispense medications and educate their patients, however, they work primarily with medical and nursing staff within the healthcare facility they are employed and may occasionally make rounds with the doctor.

A consultant pharmacist earns an average of $120,656 yearly, depending on experience and job location. As a consultant in the pharmacy course work, you will provide expert advice regarding all aspects of the use of medicines, side effects, and disease prevention.

Furthermore

Managed care pharmacist works for health plans and pharmacy benefit management companies. They earn an average salary of between $80,000 – $100,000 per year.

Long term care pharmacists typically work in nursing homes and rehabilitation centers in which they give out medicines to the nurse for distribution.  Again, the average salary is in line with other pharmacist careers at between $80,000 – $100,000 yearly.

A nuclear pharmacist earns a median salary of between $112,483 – $121,500 per year, depending on experience. They are responsible for measuring and the distribution of radioactive materials used in digital imaging such as for an MRI or CT scan.

An oncology pharmacist mixes chemotherapy drugs for cancer patients. The oncology pharmacist earns an average salary of $116,498 annually.

An infusion therapy pharmacist earns a median salary of between $129,294 – $139,658 annually. Infusion therapy involves medicine that is administered intravenously or through muscular means.

Conclusion

Becoming a doctor of pharmacy(PharmD) holder today is not an easy task. It requires at least two years of specific undergraduate college study followed by four academic years (or three calendar years) of professional pharmacy study.

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Most students enter a pharmacy degree program after completion of three or more years of college.

The pharmacist’s job market is becoming saturated, which is driving wages flat or down, so it is important to know how much a PharmD salary is before venturing into it.

FAQs

How long does it take to earn a PharmD degree?

The Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree program requires at least two years of specific undergraduate college study followed by four academic years of professional pharmacy study. Most students enter a pharmacy degree program after completion of three or more years of college.

Who Is A Pharmacist?

Pharmacists, also known as chemists or druggists, are health professionals who specialize in the use of medicines, as they deal with the composition, effects, mechanism of action, and proper and effective use of drugs.

What is the Job Outlook for Pharmacists?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2017, employment of pharmacists is expected to continue to grow 6% to 2026. This increase is partly due to the medical needs of aging baby boomers, increases in chronic diseases such as diabetes, and scientific advances in new medications.

What Is A Doctor Of Pharmacy(PharmD) Program?

A Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) is a professional doctorate in pharmacy. In some countries, it is a first professional degree and a prerequisite for licensing to practice the profession of pharmacy or to become a clinical pharmacist.

What Are The Educational Requirements And Qualifications Needed To Be A Pharmacist?

1. College degree
2. Courses
3. Training
4. Licensing

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